Greetings eBoot Campers!
If you haven’t heard the buzz going around about the micro-blogging site Twitter.com, you soon will. It’s by far the hottest social networking application in the ever-evolving world of Internet marketing. But, should you join the cyber-party?
Before I answer that question, let’s define what Twitter is. Twitter is a Web site where you can follow what people are saying and they can follow what you are saying. The unique thing about Twitter is that they only allow you to write your “tweet” (or written message) in 140 characters or less. Yep, in the ‘more is less’ world of Internet communication, they have the audacity to make us be short and to the point with everything we write. The nerve!
When you follow someone, each of their tweets shows up on your personal Web page. And when you tweet, each of your messages shows up on their Twitter page. One of the distinct differences between Twitter and other social communities such as Facebook or Linkedin is the more liberal screening process people seem to have on Twitter when deciding who to connect with. It’s not uncommon to follow complete strangers based on knowing very little about them. You can blink and have hundreds of people following you or vice versa. For an even clearer definition of Twitter, go to www.twitter.com and watch the video in the top right-hand corner of the page.
So, on to the question of if you should add Twitter as part of your Internet marketing repertoire. My answer is Yes and No. 🙂 Let me explain. My answer is no if you’re simply looking for a tool to sell more of your products or services. In my opinion, it’s just not being used that way and people frown upon heavy promoting and selling. However, if you are looking to create more online relationships, expand your brand, or stay on the bleeding edge of information in your industry, then I wholeheartedly recommend that you jump on Twitter right away.
A colleague of mine, Perry Belcher, had a great analogy of how to view Twitter. It’s like hosting a huge party. You wouldn’t invite someone to your party and immediately try and sell them the second you opened the door. Instead, you’d greet them, invite them in, have a conversation and potentially engage in business if the opportunity presents itself. This is exactly how Twitter works as well.
Twitter can be a great opportunity for you to engage people with similar interests in an incredibly fast and effective way. So here are the steps to create your Twitter account:
1. Go to Twitter.com and register for an account. It’s free!
Take some time and fill out your profile. The more thought out your profile is, the more likely people will follow you.
2. Write your first tweet. Let everyone know you are new to the site and find a fun way to introduce yourself.
3. Look for some of your friends on Twitter. You have a friend in me! Just go to www.twitter.com/coreyperlman and www.twitter.com/ebootcamp and click “follow” and you will then be following me. You’ll be able to see all the people that I follow and can follow them as well if you choose.
For the next few weeks, tweet at least once a day. It takes all of about 2-3 minutes, so don’t worry about finding the time. You can also write your tweets via your cell phone. See Twitter.com for instructions on how to do that.
A couple of final notes about Twitter:
– Try not to just tweet about what you are doing. Although that is the theme of Twitter.com, most people like to offer some value in some of their tweets. For example, did you see a really good article (maybe like the one you’re reading 🙂 and want to share it with your followers? Simply highlight the article link and add it as a tweet.
– You don’t have to be too picky on who you follow. It’s easy to un-follow someone if they are tweeting too much or for any other reason.
On occasion, it is ok to promote your products or services. Just remember the party analogy – don’t overdue it and annoy people. Communicate on a personal level with people and build trust. There will be plenty of opportunity down the road to conduct business if the opportunity presents itself naturally.
– Write a tweet at least twice a week. That should take all of about 5 minutes total!
Ok my friends, enough with the analysis paralysis, get out there and start TWEETING!
See you in Twitterville!
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